Bucket-list holidays for Dad (... that you can also take the kids on!)

Bucket-list holidays for Dad (... that you can also take the kids on!)

Bucket-list holidays for Dad (... that you can also take the kids on!)

With Father's Day approaching we asked five Dads from Taxi Baby’s extended family to share their best holiday experiences where the kids joined the holiday but didn’t slow dad down, if you get my drift.

To celebrate the Fathers in our lives and get you one step closer to your bucket-list vacation, our friends at Anywhr have generously offered $100 off your next Anywhr trip (min. booking $1200)!

 Matt: Safari in South Africa (Pilanesberg, South Africa)

I’ve been itching to go on safari since I was a boy - the lure comes from that element of danger mixed with the beauty of seeing these powerful animals in the wild. South Africa didn’t disappoint - my heart stopped when a lion walked literally one foot away from our jeep; the hairs on my neck froze whilst watching a cheetah stalk an impala; and in my mind I can still hear the thunder of thousands of hooves from a buffalo stampede.

Visiting Pilanesberg National Park in the middle of the dry season (which makes logistics and spotting wildlife easier), I travelled with the entire family - wife, 7yo, 5yo twins and both sets of grandparents! We stayed in the very child friendly Kwa Maritane Bush Lodge - complete with kids club, playground, pool and day spa to occupy the small kids and the bigger ones. The resort had a “hide” (underground tunnel to a hidden viewing room at a nearby watering hole) which was a HUGE hit, especially when the elephants arrived.

Top tip: Wait until the kids are the right age to give everyone a truly memorable family holiday (plus the kids can carry their own bags!). We had concerns that the kids would get bored during the longer drives, but for our age group, it worked out perfectly for an African adventure.

Matt is the wonderful husband of Sam Cardone, founder and creator of Plane Pal. 

Alex: Scuba Diving in Sipadan (Borneo, Malaysia)

Consistently ranked amongst the top dive sites in the world, Sipadan was very high up on my bucket list. Boasting a hugely diverse marine environment of fish, sharks, turtles and macro life, Sipadan is best known for schools of big fish and I will never forget being face to face with an enormous swarm of barracuda (each fish 1-2m long!).

We stayed four nights at the Sipadan Kapalai Dive Resort - a luxury water village built on stilts over a reef; travelling with my wife, son Peter (2yo at the time) and the in-laws, who are also keen divers. 

Top tip: Invite a baby-sitter! The grandparents were thrilled to look after Pete whilst my wife and I went out diving, then we swapped parenting duties so no one missed any dive time. 

Alex is the long suffering husband of Elise, Taxi Baby Co.’s founder and head car seat tech. 

Mark: Snow much fun in Niseko (Hokkaido, Japan)

 Located in the north island of Japan, Niseko is renowned for arguably the driest and lightest snow in the world; creating ‘champagne’ powder conditions for snow-goers. I visited with my wife and three kids (3yo, 2yo, 3mo) in January 2017. 

The combination of deep powder, tight tree runs, breathtaking off-piste terrain and the full gambit of Japanese cuisine, meant that I’ve had my eye on a Niseko ski trip for some time, and it certainly lived up to expectations. The highlight was an early morning back-country tour - cutting the first tracks after a solid night of snowfall.

Top tip: Go for ski-in, ski-out accommodation. If you’re travelling with kids, try to stay directly on the slopes to avoid carrying three sets of skis, poles, bags (and most importantly car seats!) etc on the mini-buses which ferry you around town. Japan’s rail system is amazing (and we took a train directly from the airport and then a bus to our accommodation) so you can end up doing the whole trip without setting foot in a motor vehicle at all. Bonus tip - book restaurants early. Restaurants get booked out up to a year in advance during peak season, so plan your culinary journey as much as your alpine adventure (the food is on par with the snow - so don’t miss out). 

Mark is the lovely husband of Jodie, Taxi Baby Co.’s Health and Safety guru who looks after our school bus safety program.

Tim: Wandering Angkor Wat (Siem Reap, Cambodia)

To be honest, I’m not really a temple kind of guy, so Angkor Wat was an after-thought on my travel agenda; but I definitely look back on this as a once-in-a-lifetime experience and would highly recommend it. The scale of the place cannot be understated - it is enormous and what makes it even more impressive is the detail of craftsmanship and the fact that it was built ~1000 years ago, without all the modern machinery that we take for granted today.

I took our daughter (2yo) to Angkor Wat, which was probably about as young as you would want on this kind of holiday; she did enjoy clamouring around the temples but the cultural element was definitely beyond her. We used a personal tour guide, which was thoroughly worthwhile as he understood that my daughter had a short fuse and gave us the abridged tour. Whilst you could take days to go through all the various temple sites, we did the three main sites (Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom and Ta Prohm) over one and a half days; and this was the perfect duration for our short stay (long weekend). 

Top tip: Plan your ground transport. We’ve travelled extensively throughout Asia and had a number of bad experiences with taxis not having operational seat belts etc. So for Siem Reap we used a car service (with driver) and took a portable child restraint (Urban Kanga) for the kids. Bonus tip! Our hotel made us packed lunches, which were incredible and made life much easier. 

Tim is our legal advisor, giving wonderful advice on everything from contracts to cocktails and sports tips. 

Farhan: Dreaming in Disneyland (Tokyo, Japan)

Visiting the happiest place on earth has always been on my list, and being able to enjoy this experience with the whole family really put the zing in this amazing trip. We chose Tokyo Disneyland (as opposed to the one in the US) due to proximity to Singapore, and the opportunity to sample the Tokyo cuisine. The main highlight of this holiday was the park’s attractions - obviously there’s plenty for the kids to do (3yo, 5yo), and using the fastpass system meant I could ride Space Mountain (amongst others) without queueing for hours whilst my wife entertained the kids on the littler rides. 

We stayed in the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel - a beautiful Victorian-styled building that keeps the theme park magic going after you leave Disneyland. Other highlights included a visit to the standing sushi bars around Tsukiji fish market and taking the kids on a Shinkansen bullet train. 

Top tip: Relax and let the kids set the pace. Given our children were quite young we didn’t try to cram too much in and I really enjoyed that aspect of the holiday. Don’t get me wrong, we still did everything we wanted, but were also able to relax and the kids loved every moment. 

Farhan is the hunky husband of Deb, Taxi Baby Co.’s marketing guru (both are certified car seat techs - how sweet!). 

Need a little help enjoying the journey, not just the destination? Check out our range of wearable safety restraints, travel-friendly car seats and booster seats, as well as our range of airline approved comfort devices.


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